About Jesus - Steve (Stephen) Sweetman

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Beyond Human Reasoning   


Every Saturday evening as a child my mother would sit me down to help me memorize the Sunday school Bible verse I needed to recite the next day.  Success would add another star beside my name on the classroom's bulletin board, and I had lots of stars.  In 1969 while on our Bible quiz team I memorized much of John's gospel.  Then, at Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, New York, we placed third among all Free Methodist quiz teams in eastern North America .  I'm sure we would have finished first, but I was distracted after meeting that pretty girl on the North Tonawanda, New York quiz team.  From 1971 to 1973 I had memorized close to two thousand verses.  In 1982 I memorized Paul's letter to the Philippians which I once recited in one sitting without an error.  While involved in the Jesus People Movement in 1972, I memorized Isaiah 55:8 and 9. 


"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."


I certainly don't discount human reasoning.  Humanity was created with the ability to think issues through to their logical conclusion.  That being said, we often just don't get it.  Much of what God does seems completely opposite to our way of thinking.           


Why did God put that tree in the garden and then tell Adam not to eat from it?  Isn't that like a mother placing freshly baked cookies on the table and then telling her son not to touch them?  Why did Jesus tell His apostles to go and preach the gospel knowing that most of them would be executed in the process?  How can dead men preach?  Why did God birth the church knowing that Stephen would be stoned to death days later?  Why ruin a birth with a death?  Why was Paul called to preach to government leaders, only to have his head sliced from His shoulders by Emperor Nero?  What kind of calling was that?  Why did Jesus save my life at the age of six by healing me of Juvenile Diabetes, only to leave me legally blind for seventy two years and counting?  Why not go all the way and make my life more productive?      


I sure don't have the answers to all of our whys.  Our negatives often appear to be God's positives.  Maybe God planted that tree in the garden to prove He could love the disobedient.  Maybe the apostles' martyrdom was a seed for church growth.  Maybe Paul's execution was his ultimate testimony to Nero, something words could not express.  So I'm legally blind, but as many tell me, "I'm not spiritually blind."  What's more important? 


My maybes do not answer my whys and many of my whys are unanswerable in this life.  Isaiah 55:8 and 9 tell me that God is God and I am just plain old me.  So why worry about my whys knowing my maybes are just maybes.  I leave it all in the hands of the One who exists way beyond my human reasoning.     


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